Heidelberg USA has issued “Data Protection for Printers,” a new white paper focusing on the unique issues printers face in keeping production running smoothly in the event of unexpected interruptions.
As printers evolve their operations into fully automated workflows, they must be prepared to keep production running through various disruptions due to power outages and system crashes, as well as software and hardware upgrades/migrations, virus infestations, natural disasters, and the illness or departure of key employees.
In order to bring back a failed system, printers need easy access to all system-state data applications and components, including users, device configurations, security policies, etc. Skeptics may disagree about the need for urgency in taking measures to protect their data, but the fact remains that 10 percent of hard drives fail every year—for an average of 130,000 each week in the U.S. In addition, 30 percent of businesses that experience a major disaster go out of business within a year afterward, while 60 percent fail within five years.
“It is human nature to ignore disaster recovery and business continuity planning because many assume that the chance of something happening to them is highly unlikely,” said Eugene F. O’Brien, Senior Technical Consultant at Heidelberg USA, author of the white paper. “The bottom line is this: With proper planning for business continuity and disaster recovery, an unexpected system outage can become an inconvenience rather than a catastrophe.”
Failure to protect essential applications such as DNS servers, domain servers, DHCP servers or any other server that provides plant-wide services, can have a significant negative impact on business. Among other consequences, it may result in missed production schedules, lost customers and revenue, the inability to accept new jobs or to complete or bill for existing orders, and damage to a firm’s reputation.
“Data Protection for Printers” emphasizes the importance of implementing effective backup strategies to prevent the loss of mission-critical information, and discusses the pros and cons of common traditional data backup techniques, from RAID storage to renting storage on the Internet, also known as “cloud” storage. A more modern and effective approach, the white paper suggests, would involve a Data Protection Analysis to prepare businesses for various “what-if” scenarios, and identify gaps that need correction. By identifying responsible parties and defining their recovery objectives, the paper concludes, printers can show their customers that the protection of their job data and schedules is a priority. Furthermore, by identifying single points of failure wherever they are likely to occur, such an analysis can maximize the high availability, accessibility and performance of the systems on which a print shop depends.